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Disadvantages Of Phage Therapy

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Bacteriophages (phages) are viruses that infect specific bacteria and are one of the most abundant sources on earth (Zuraw, 2016). In fact there are about 1030 that live on our planet today (Zuraw, 2016). Phage are able to reproduce by attaching to a specific bacterial host and injecting its DNA into that bacteria (Zuraw, 2016).In order to fully understand phage and how they can be used, it is important to know about the history of phage. Phage were discovered by Ernest Hankin and Frederick Twort in the beginning of the 20th century (Endersen,O’Mahony, Hill, Ross,McAuliffe, Coffey, 2014). When phage were first discovered by these two scientist they only really knew about their effects on the bacteria. Then in 1917, a scientist named Felix…show more content…
One of the advantages in using phage therapy is that it is low in cost. Isolation and the cost of purification is coming down even more as technology advances(Loc-Carillo, Abedon, 2011). It is also very easy to discover phage because they can be found basically anywhere bacteria is found (Loc-Carillo, Abedon, 2011). Another advantage of using phage is that they are natural and have little to no impact on the environment (Loc-Carillo, Abedon, 2011). Phages are made from nucleic acids and proteins, and not from chemicals that could impact the environment like antibiotics do (Loc-Carillo, Abedon, 2011). There are also some cons to using phage therapy. One being that phage research can take a long time. This is because the bacterial host is very specific for all phages, and finding a specific host and figuring out which phage treats what bacteria is time consuming.
Another critic people have about using phage is simply that it has not been researched as much as other forms of medical treatment (Chan, Abedon, Loc-Carrillo, 2013). In others words there is a lot that scientists know about phage but there is also a lot they do not know and the main question is its efficacy (Chan, Abedon, Loc-Carrillo, 2013). This is also a concern because of the simple lack of funding this form of research is getting right now (Chan, Abedon, Loc-Carrillo, 2013).
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